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September 21, 2009 | by  | in News | [ssba]

By-election botched

Salient understands the recent VUWSA by-election was declared invalid by an independent panel following a complaint by Act on Campus vice-president Peter McCaffrey.

Sources revealed the decision to Salient last week. The report had not been officially released at the time of print.

McCaffrey complained because of irregularities between online and paper ballots, and lax identification procedures with paper votes.

Upon recieving the complaint the election committee released a statement saying the irregularities’ while “not strictly in accordance with the VUWSA constitution” had “minimal” influence on the by-election.

The matter was passed onto an independent panel, comprised of former NZUSA president Joey Randall, former VUWSA Treasurer Graeme Edgeler and Senior Lecturer in Statistics Dr Richard Arnold, who have reportedly found the by-election to be invalid.

If the election is invalid, the decisions of the VUWSA exec over the past two months may not be legitimate.

Former Vice President (Administration) Alexander Neilson—one of the executive members replaced in the by-election—said the panel would have needed a “decent reason” to declare the by-election invalid.

“In almost every election there is something that doesn’t go completely right. In past elections we’ve had a number of exec members who’ve helped the returning officer to ensure compliance. This [error] may have happened because the returning officer was new to VUWSA.

“There is definitely some inexperience on the exec. There’s been a loss of a lot of institutional knowledge from staff and exec members recently.”

Neilson said the panel’s decision put the exec “in a tight position”.

“It puts the voting strength on or below six, [which is] what’s required to make quorum,” he said.

Five new executive members—Max Hardy, Caitlin Dunham, Guy Williams, Zachary Dorner and Luke Cao—were elected in the by-election held from July 27 to 29.

Further updates will be available on the Salient website.


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Kia ora, biography box, kia ora.

Comments (2)

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  1. Nelson Muntz says:

    Haw haw!

  2. Hank Scorpio says:

    wow jasmine not the sort of publicity you’d want with the vsm bill taking centre stage huh

    waste of time and money

    lemme repeat that

    waste of time and money


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